What to Consider When Picking a Concealed Carry Jacket
Your choice of a concealed carry jacket will have a direct bearing on the concealment of your gun, ease of drawing the gun, and of course your seasonal comfort and style. However, like buying a pair of shoes, it's not a one-size-fits-all item, so you may want to choose one for spring and early fall, and one for winter.
No matter the size, color, or style of the concealed carry jacket, whenever you carry a concealed weapon, you want to do it in a way that is not only comfortable and safe but also discrete as possible. While people carry various types of concealed handguns for different reasons, they all share some common primary considerations when choosing a concealed carry jacket.
As with most clothing, it is important to ensure that a concealed carry jacket suits the contemporary weather conditions of your location or the location you intend to be.
Some jackets are perfect for summer but do not provide sufficient warmth in winter. Therefore, you may want to have one jacket for warmer times of the year, or consider a layering system with a wind/waterproof outer jacket, such as a soft shell jacket as the outer layer and a sweater or two underneath.
Also, it must do the job that you're getting it to do, namely aid in concealment but not hinder the draw. You need to be able to either zip it open quickly, or the jacket should have a hem length that's short enough to pull up for access to your concealed carry gun.
Make sure to consider the fabric and fastening. You need to be able to get the jacket open in a hurry or be able to pull it up to access your carry pistol. Therefore, make sure the zipper is large enough to be easily grasped and pulled down, and the fabric isn't too slick or stiff to be able to manipulate.
Your carry gear is supposed to make life easier on you, not harder. Choose accordingly.
A Good Jacket Should Be Snug Enough To Be Warm, But Loose Enough For Concealment
A good jacket should have a comfortable fit. Too tight and access is impeded (and your gun might imprint, making it obvious that you're carrying) but too loose and it won't keep you warm. Worse still, it will make you look bad.
Clothing worn for concealed carry should be comfortable – and stylish! – but also loose enough to effectively conceal your gun. This applies to jackets as well as concealed carry shirts.
Also remember that just because it's a concealed carry jacket doesn't mean it shouldn't do everything a normal one does. There should still be pockets for things like your phone, car keys and other things you would put in your jacket pockets. It should be comfortable to wear, and you should like wearing it.
Like any other clothing or gear, if you don't like using it you will find reasons not to. So make sure to pick a jacket you like!
Your concealed carry jacket should blend seamlessly with the clothes you wear. In reality, any jacket can be a concealed carry jacket so long as it conceals your carry gun; it can be that favorite zippered hoodie, a pea coat or you can get a high-tech soft shell.
Would you wear it if you weren't carrying? Then you've found a good concealed carry jacket. If you wouldn't…why bother?